Why People Are Really Upset Over Johnny Depp's New Role

November 2nd 2016

Laura Donovan

Harry Potter fans are eagerly anticipating the release of spin-off film "Fantastic Beasts" this month, but reports of actor Johnny Depp's involvement in the franchise is dampening their enthusiasm.

Deadline reported on Tuesday that Depp, who was accused of domestic abuse by ex-wife Amber Heard over the summer, will play a leading role in "Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them," the sequel to the soon-to-be-released "Fantastic Beasts."

Reporter Mike Fleming Jr. added that if you "look carefully, you might spot [Depp] in a tiny turn in the first installment of the J.K. Rowling-created Harry Potter spinoff, which Warner Bros opens November 18."

Fans say the casting of Depp clashes with the values of author J.K. Rowling's Wizarding World.

In the first installment of the series, Harry Potter escapes his emotionally abusive, neglectful aunt and uncle who make him live in a tiny room under the stairs.

Over the summer, Heard dropped abuse allegations against Depp in their divorce settlement. She vowed to donate the $7 million she received in her divorce settlement to charity, arguing in a statement that "money played no role" in her separation from Depp. She said she intended to donate the money to charities that help women and children. This decision was widely interpreted as Heard's way of expressing that she did not fabricate her allegations against Depp for financial gain.


What does Depp's tarnished reputation mean for his future projects?

Heard's allegations against Depp became public after the release of his latest Disney film "Alice Through the Looking Glass," which was widely deemed a box-office failure.

But Depp, whose films have grossed $8.3 billion globally according to a 2015 Forbes estimate, appears to be getting the benefit of the doubt from some Hollywood executives. In addition to appearing in the "Fantastic Beasts" franchise, he is set to reprise his famous role as Captain Jack Sparrow in Disney's "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales" next year.

In the midst of Heard's highly-publicized abuse allegations against Depp, Disney CEO Bob Iger told The Hollywood Reporter that he wasn't worried about the actor's presence in the upcoming "Pirates" film, arguing that audiences will be able to separate Depp from his character.

"I don't know whether [the scandal will blow over] or not," Iger said. "We have Jack Sparrow."